Soft plastic recycling

What was once considered rubbish

Going circular requires businesses to take a good hard look at what they’re doing, and see how that could be improved.

And that’s exactly what we’ve done through our partnership with PACT Recycling, the largest recycler of post-industrial plastic in the Southern Hemisphere.

Before this packaging overhaul project started, APL used to wrap the aluminium that was sent from our warehouse to our nationwide manufacturer network in cases made from single use cardboard.

A lot of APL’s externally sourced resources arrived at the factory in soft plastic packaging, so rather than continuing to send it all to landfill, we decided to repurpose it. Now, our soft plastic is bundled up at the warehouse and taken to PACT Recycling’s factory on APL Direct trucks.

A significant difference

In 2023, we repurposed 7,525kg of soft plastic, and 36,375kg of TPV/rubber. That’s nearly 44,000kg of plastic that has remained in our circular economy, as opposed to ending up in landfill and being replaced with virgin plastic.

PACT Recycling melts the soft plastic down and turns it into pellets. PACT Recycling then uses those pellets to create our newly developed reusable cases, in the future these will replace our single use cardboard cases. At present, we don’t have the plant & equipment to make the pellets in house at PPL (another Profile Group business unit), but we are working towards a goal of making that happen.

These cases are used to transport the aluminium, replacing the need for single use cardboard. This innovative packaging method is reusable, and if they become damaged  the plastic can be palletised, then re-made into packaging product again and again.